Three Die in Plane Crash on the Way to CNFR
Two Washington State men and an Oregon woman were killed in a small plane crash while on their way to attend the CNFR to see their family members perform.
Authorities identified the victims as the 74-year-old pilot, Gerald Hunter; 53-year-old Ned Kayser and 51-year-old Janice Davis.
Kayser was a longtime cowboy on the Columbia River Circuit.
His daughter, Kelli, competed this week in breakaway roping for UNLV.
Janice Davis was Miss Rodeo Oregon in 1981, and comes from a large extended family of rodeo competitors.
Three of her nieces are scheduled to compete this week.
The plane reportedly hit a violent thunderstorm not long after taking off from the Dalles municipal airport in Dallesport, Washington.
Emergency management officials say their plane crashed in a rugged mountain area of Eastern Oregon early Sunday.
The exact circumstances of the crash are unknown, pending an FAA investigation.